On High Flying Man, loss and desire take center stage as Berry delves deep into 21st century malaise, crafting densely layered songs which project an unshakable yearning for deliverance from the world’s shortcomings. Each track extends an outstretched palm towards universal connection, blending a complex mix of pop hooks, rock swagger, and psychedelia into dejected populist anthems. Just ahead of the album’s release, he shares album-centerpiece “Eagle Eye” which teeters between pure grace and extreme sorrow, unfolding into a massive, immediately memorable tide of melancholic beauty.
High Flying Man follows The Berries’ previous releases, 2018’s Start All Over Again and 2019’s Berryland. While longtime listeners will undoubtedly recognize Berry’s disaffected drawl and melodic sensibility, High Flying Man’s complex arrangements and expansive sonic landscape place it well apart from its predecessors. Berry enlisted live band members Danny Paul (drums), Emma Danner (backing vocals), and Lance Umble (bass) during the recording of High Flying Man, as well as the mixing talents of Rob Schnapf (Elliott Smith, Beck, Guided by Voices), breaking from the self-produced home recording ethos of the previous Berries LPs. The collaborative nature of High Flying Man’s recording process is reflected in the quality of each song’s arrangement. Freed from the pressure of being individually responsible for every detail committed to tape, Berry was able to focus his attention more fully on the creative demands of constructing a dynamic and cohesive record.
With High Flying Man, Berry embraces undying love in the face of isolation. Daring to want more life becomes a spiritual rallying cry against a world that has failed to make life either meaningful or beautiful. At their core, these songs are not about revolution, but they are about the faith that gives something like revolution a purpose in the first place.
High Flying Man sees its release on August 19 via Run For Cover – pre-order it here.
Photo Courtesy: Ryan Molnar